Last time I shared about keeping realistic expectations and adjusting goals to fit what I could manage. Did you see it? Those photos won’t grace the internets very often.
During that year as I adjusted to life as mom, I decided what would be my main areas of responsibility. I focused on those as my true priorities because I wanted to keep my life balanced. I kept them written in a notebook to remind myself.
- Read Bible
- Praise God
- Ministry opportunities
- Encourage him
- Be loving
- Be nice
- Take care of physical needs
- Love on her
- Teach her
- Care for physical needs
- Play with her
- Time to rest
- Health and appearance
- Social interaction
- Clean and maintain
- Paperwork and finances
6. Everyone Else
- Opportunities to help
- Time together
It sounds like a lot, but seeing those areas written together helped me to pull back from the things that were receiving too much importance, and focus more on areas I felt had been neglected.
Having a clean home was important, but it wasn’t the measure of my success as a wife and mom. It was only one area of responsibility.
Keeping my interests on the list meant it was OK to spend time doing something I thought was fun.
Reminding myself to play with my daughter helped me to dedicate time for more than the feeding, nap time, and training.
It wasn’t necessarily easy and simple to stick to this list, as if I could just write it down and my life would fall into place. Some of the barriers I experienced on a daily basis:
1. Feeling tired and grumpy.
2. Being over-ambitious in planning.
3. Procrastinating and not taking advantage of short time increments.
And if I had an easy solution for those regular challenges, then none of us would be here to encourage each other.
With an idea of how I wanted my life to be balanced and a huge measure of grace, I didn’t worry so much about the shortcomings. Now, when I look back at that time, I don’t think about the mess.
I remember the challenge of Lane depending on me and not being independent enough to be without me. I remember times when I got to be still and watch. I remember this:
When I write helpful tips here on Small Notebook, it’s not because I have everything figured out. It includes a lot of grace, because we’re all trying to do the best job we can.
I want to encourage you to take a moment and clearly define what your priorities are. If you have them written in a list, then you give yourself permission to let go of some of the things that aren’t so important. It’s easier to choose what to say no to, knowing that you’re choosing something better. It makes it easier to extend more grace, because people and relationships become the focus instead of daily chores. And it makes it OK to not be perfect!